Cha cha changes: Swoon 57
Before March 2020, did you know that it was impossible to work from home? It could not be done. Kids interrupting, dogs barking, the sound of a dishwasher in the background…these atrocities were hard proof to in-office colleagues that you were clearly NOT working. Have you noticed lately that on late night tv shows we often see the host’s precocious kids (with the blondest hair and crazy amounts of confidence) exploding into the room. It is just adorable. One brilliant parental unit I know has a “good behavior contest” for their kids, the winner gets to dress dad for work…any way they wish. It is beyond anything you can imagine, he once was Harry Potter with a cape, wand, and glasses (stuffed owl perched on shoulder). Another time he was all glammed up, channeling his inner Hedwig, no glitter was spared in the makeup. I have no idea what this man does (besides being an awesome dad) but he is showing up to work dressed like a drag queen, and clearly it is not a problem. Currently having your kid on your lap at a Zoom meeting (in their cute pjs with clementine juice dripping down their chin) is almost a prerequisite, and what would conference calls be without numerous dogs barking in the background. Twitter has decided that working from home is now a permanent option. Cha cha changes.
Before March 2020 I did this crazy thing called shopping. Alone time in the car, listening to some good music, drinking coffee. Knowing my stores like the back of my hand I could be in and out in 5 minutes or take my time picking out every apple with care. Remember the calm of purchasing food that just looked good…a nice little treat…sliced watermelon or raspberries on a whim. Remember smiling at fellow shoppers and giving cooking advice…instead of the evil eye to anyone within 6 feet. Sigh. I loved nothing more than chatting with the checkout people while packing my bags. I really really loved packing grocery bags. Square heavy boxes at the bottom, lighter stuff on top. Hearing my mom’s voice in my head…don’t squish the bread, don’t scoonch the lettuce, don’t mush the grapes, ahhh old times. Organization and problem solving, a joy. These days we are ordering from a restaurant distributor, the problem solving skills used a little differently…figuring out how long dairy will last, will we be able to finish an entire case of baby lettuce (stupid question, we are Armenian, we eat salads like rabbits), will someone want to share these strawberries before they go bad (problem solved with the purchase of an ice cream maker). The truck arrives and we social distance as he unloads, a little friendly banter through our masks. It is not the same. We will be set for two weeks. So much less interaction, so much less connection…but to be honest, such better food, at such better prices. Will we ever go back to the way it was, at least not fully. Cha cha changes.
Before March 2020 I had absolutely no problem with my kid living across the country. I actually drove him there. No big deal… I can fly there in eight hours. Any. Time. I. Want. Ugg. Currently I am in a bit of a state because that is clearly no longer possible. He doesn’t mind California anymore (native New Yorkers have an 18 month warm up or return home to NY thing with Los Angeles). He loves his girlfriend, she loves her mom, her mom lives in Los Angeles…I am not stupid, we all know guys tend to go where their girls are. I cannot complain, mine ended up in NY with me. Sigh. Cha cha changes.
Weddings, vacations, graduations, celebrations, memorials, camp, school, college, travel, reunions… huge reasons to gather. Nope. Cha cha changes.
I recently saw a FB post of manipulated photographs…Hitler in front of the Eiffel Tower with a superimposed modern picture of a couple on vacation taken in exactly the same place. Another of Normandy during the war, with a superimposed modern image of people playing on the beach. It was eye opening to be reminded what hardships others have lived. Even with next to no work for the past two months, no government help (I have no employees), and not much work in the near future…thanks to my teacher husband who is working 12 hour days creating and teaching online content… we have the ability to get food safely and to pay our bills. We are fortunate and I am humbled.
I would like to think that the changes and hardships we are going through might better us…and if they don’t, that we will learn to adapt, and mourn, and grow. Stagnation kills. I look forward to goodness ahead.